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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 06-11-24

Cyprus Press and Information Office: Turkish Cypriot Press Review Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Republic of Cyprus Press and Information Office Server at <http://www.pio.gov.cy/>

TURKISH PRESS AND OTHER MEDIA No.228/06 24.11.06

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] Statements by Hasan Ercakica.
  • [02] UBP proposes prison sentences for the Greek Cypriots using Turkish Cypriot property in the free territories of the Republic.
  • [03] Reaction to the incident at the English School continues.
  • [04] Turkish President Sezer addresses COMCEC meeting in Istanbul; Reference to Cyprus.
  • [05] Ali Babacan: Turkey will not take unilateral steps on the Cyprus problem and the EU cannot be unbiased on Cyprus.
  • [06] Gul: Turkeys relations with the EU and the Muslim countries are not alternatives to each other.
  • [07] Egemen Bagis comments on the Cyprus problem at the WEF.
  • [08] Turkish Secretary for EU Affairs on the history of the Turkish blockade on Cypriot registered vessels.
  • [09] EU High Level Contact group starts its contacts in the occupied part of Cyprus.
  • [10] Turkish Anadolu Group signs stock transfer accord with Greek Alpha Bank AE.
  • [11] News reports and poll on Erdogans ascending to the Presidency of Turkey.
  • [12] Turkish police raided Christian missionaries in Istanbul: Two detained.

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] Statements by Hasan Ercakica

    Illegal Bayrak television (23.11.06) broadcast the following:

    The `Presidential spokesman´ Hasan Ercakica has pointed to the fact that the law in `South Cyprus´ which stipulates detention and imprisonment of those buying and selling former Greek Cypriot property left over in `North Cyprus´, also covers those using the properties formerly owned by Greek Cypriots.

    He said that the law will force the Turkish Cypriot `people´ not to cross into `South Cyprus´ unless deemed necessary.

    Mr Ercakica was speaking at a press conference today where he evaluated the Presidents latest meeting with the UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan and the letter sent by the UN Undersecretary General for Political Affairs Ibrahim Gambari to the two leaders, as well as yesterdays attack on a group of Turkish Cypriot pupils studying at a school in `South Cyprus´.

    Mr Ercakica told reporters that the meeting between `President´ Talat and the UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan had been very useful and positive, during which Mr Annan once again pointed to the need to lift the international isolation of the Turkish Cypriot `people´.

    Mr Ercakica said that Mr Annan also expressed his disappointment over the rejection of the Annan Plan by the `Greek Cypriot Administration´.

    Mr Ercakica said that such statements which acknowledged the Turkish Cypriot Sides efforts and political will towards a solution to the Cyprus Problem, was important in motivating the Turkish Cypriot people to continue with their efforts.

    Referring to the letter sent by the UN Undersecretary General for Political Affairs Ibrahim Gambari to the two leaders in Cyprus, he said that the letter prevented a possible interruption of the negotiations process on the Cyprus issue.

    He also accused the `Greek Cypriot Administration´ of trying to prevent the UN Undersecretary from sending the letter.

    Touching upon yesterdays attack on a group of Turkish Cypriot pupils studying at the English School, Mr Ercakica said the attack reflected the growing racism against Turkish Cypriots in `South Cyprus´.

    Accusing the `Greek Cypriot Administration´ of failing to take the necessary measures against growing racism in `South Cyprus´, he said that the Greek Cypriot Sides approach is making the danger even bigger.

    Stressing that all those having authority in `South Cyprus´ have responsibility over the attack, he called on the people to act with common sense.

    [02] UBP proposes prison sentences for the Greek Cypriots using Turkish Cypriot property in the free territories of the Republic

    Illegal Bayrak television (23.11.06) broadcast the following:

    The leader of the main opposition National Unity Party Huseyin Ozgurgun has proposed that the `government´ should prepare a law of its own similar to the one in `South Cyprus´ that will pave the way for the arrest and imprisonment of Greek Cypriots who are in possession of Turkish Cypriot property in the `South´.

    The UBP leader was speaking at a press conference today at the `Republics Assembly´ where he evaluated the latest developments on the property issue as well as yesterdays attack on Turkish Cypriot pupils in `South Cyprus´.

    Speaking during the press conference, Mr. Ozgurgun described the `Greek Cypriot Administrations´ latest actions as a move designed to put further pressure on the Turkish Cypriot `people´.

    He said yesterdays attack on a group of Turkish Cypriot pupils was a pre-planned one which was a reminiscence of the Greek Cypriot EOKA attacks between 1963-74.

    Mr Ozgurgun warned that the situation might become more dangerous if the necessary importance is not attached to the incident.

    Referring to the law in `South Cyprus´ which envisages the arrest and imprisonment of those using properties formerly owned by Greek Cypriots in the `Republic´, Mr Ozgurgun said that the move is the latest by the fascist `Greek Cypriot Administration´ and said those supporting the law ignore the fact that Turkish Cypriots were forced to leave their villages, 103 in total, in the South.

    [03] Reaction to the incident at the English School continues

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (24.11.06) reports under the banner headlines Will the racist organization be dissolved? and says that investigation is going on to find the attackers. The paper reports that the attackers could be the members of the Fascist Chrisi Avgi Organization. The paper also reports about the precautionary measures taken by the Cyprus security officials and the English School Administration. It reports that Turkish Cypriot students welcomed the members of the Student organizations visit and statements of solidarity and unity. The paper extensively gives statements, criticism and condemnations expressed by the Greek Cypriot officials and politicians regarding the attack.

    On the same issue, Turkish Cypriot politician and leader of the Peace and Democracy Movement (BDH) Mustafa Akinci condemning the attack said that the culprits should be found and punished. He said: We should not generalize and declare guilty the whole Greek Cypriot community. The attackers were Greek Cypriot youth, but those who protected the Turkish Cypriot students were also Greek Cypriot youth. So, when we condemn the attackers in the meantime we have to appreciate the act of the defenders. He also expressed his satisfaction regarding the quick and firm reaction of the Greek Cypriot leadership. However, he demanded the punishment of the culprits.

    Moreover, the members of the executive committee of the New Cyprus Party (YKP) Rasih Keskiner, Alpay Durduran and Murat Kanli in a statement referred to the incident in the English School and demanded the punishment of the attackers. The Partys secretary Keskiner strongly criticized the attack and said that the duty of the Cyprus government is not only to condemn the incident but to find and punish the attackers and take measures so that similar incidents will not happen again. The fanaticism resurrected the other day again, he said. Praising the Greek Cypriot students action in protecting their Turkish Cypriot School mates against the attackers Keskiner said: Here it is, the solidarity of the Cypriots will sooner or latter defeat the fanaticism. The Partys foreign relations Secretary Alpay Durduran referred to the new law enforced by the Cyprus Government regarding the illegal exploitation of the Greek Cypriot property in the occupied territories of the Republic of Cyprus. Durduran criticized the exaggerated and intentional reporting of the Turkish Cypriot press regarding the law. He branded the press reaction an open provocation.

    (MHY)

    [04] Turkish President Sezer addresses COMCEC meeting in Istanbul; Reference to Cyprus

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (23.11.06) reports the following:

    Speaking at the 22nd meeting of the Standing Committee for Economic and Commercial Cooperation (COMCEC) of the OIC, Sezer reminded that the accession negotiations between Turkey and the EU continues, the screening process completed and a progress made in some of the chapters.

    "Turkey's moral, cultural and historical ties with the Organization of Islamic Conference (OIC) countries adds an important dimension and richness to the integration efforts with the European Union. On the other hand, we hope that Turkey's EU membership will enhance Turkey's relations with the Islamic countries. Turkey believes regional cooperation is a key for international peace, stability and prosperity. Turkey always gives great importance to the relations with Islamic countries. Turkey will continue to support OIC's and COMCEC's works.

    President Sezer declared that he wants to point out some political issues that also concern the OIC and he continues: "Since 2004, the OIC calls to end the restrictions and insulations that are applied to Turkish Cypriots. Lastly, during the Foreign Ministers Meeting in Baku on June, the OIC once more put forth its determined attitude. We expect the member countries to take steps to implement the decisions, so that the OIC will strengthen its plausibility and respectability in front of the international community. We thanked the member countries that took steps in this direction," he said.

    Ahmet Necdet Sezer emphasized that Turkish Cypriots put forward their will for peace and compromise in the April 24th, 2004 referendum and added: "This positive approach should not punish Turkish Cypriots, that was registered in United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan report dated May 28, 2004. The integration of the Turkish Cypriots with the world should not be hindered, international justifiability of the equality struggle should be supported. Relations in all areas should be enhanced especially in the fields of communication, trade, tourism, culture and sports."

    [05] Ali Babacan: Turkey will not take unilateral steps on the Cyprus problem and the EU cannot be unbiased on Cyprus

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (23.11.06) reports the following:

    "Currently the Cyprus issue has become an EU matter, and the EU cannot be unbiased about this issue," said Turkish State Minister and Chief Negotiator for EU talks Ali Babacan, who took the floor at the World Economic Forum (WEF) Turkey Summit in Istanbul.

    "The Cyprus question is a 40-year old issue. When the `Greek Cypriot administration´ was accepted as an EU member, the Cyprus issue was imported to the EU," added Babacan.

    Noting that a third party has been necessary from the very beginning to solve this problem, Babacan complained, "UN is the only platform to solve this issue. However, the Cyprus issue has grown to be an obstacle before Turkey's EU membership."

    "Northern Cyprus is still isolated. EU still has not met its commitments (given in 2004 about northern Cyprus). Turkey will not take any step until these commitments are met. If we are talking about commitments, both sides should meet theirs," noted Babacan.

    Regarding Turkey's EU process, Babacan said that there is no slowdown in implementation.

    "Turkey is an important window for the EU which is opening to eastern world. Turkey is able to make business with Israel and/or any Arab country in the region. Turkey's membership will change the future of the EU significantly. This will also contribute to global peace," said Babacan.

    [06] Gul: Turkeys relations with the EU and the Muslim countries are not alternatives to each other

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (23.11.06) reports the following:

    "Some circles thought that Turkey's relations with Muslim countries would be cut when its negotiations with the EU were launched. But, they are complementary of each other, not alternatives to each other," said Turkish Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul.

    Making a keynote speech in the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Turkey, Gul noted that security and stability are two important things for every country and the region.

    "If they are not ensured, there will be tears, agonies and poverty," he stressed.

    Gul underlined the importance of transparency, respect to human rights, freedom of expression and rule of law.

    Noting that everybody should take lessons from what has happened in the region, Gul said that controversies should be solved within the framework of win-win principle.

    "Palestinian-Israeli dispute is one concerning not only the region but also the world. Any negative development in the region will have an effect on the entire world. Security and stability have to be ensured," he added.

    After the sessions, Turkish Parliament Speaker Bulent Arinc hosted a dinner in honor of guests at the Dolmabahce Palace.

    Meanwhile, Turkish President Ahmet Necdet Sezer received Egyptian Prime Minister Ahmad Nazif.

    [07] Egemen Bagis comments on the Cyprus problem at the WEF

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (23.11.06) reports the following:

    "The Cyprus problem is being discussed so much recently. And this means that Turkey is being punished for the contributions it made to the Customs Union," said Egemen Bagis, MP from the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP).

    Making a keynote speech in the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Turkey, Bagis indicated that the Cyprus problem is imposed as a precondition before Turkey's EU membership process, and this can be justified by no reason because it was not a precondition before the EU membership of the `Greek Cypriot administration´.

    "If Turkey had not become a member of the Customs Union, these discussions would have never been made. Therefore, the Europeans should ask themselves what the mistake is, and who the uncompromising party is," he stressed.

    On the other hand, European Commissioner for economic and monetary affairs Joaquin Almunia noted that most of the Europeans and the European Commission support Turkey's membership.

    "But, the accession negotiations will be more challenging than the former accession processes. If Turkey thinks that all these problems can be solved in Brussels, it will make a big mistake," said Almunia.

    Almunia added that Turkey should speed up implementation of the reforms.

    [08] Turkish Secretary for EU Affairs on the history of the Turkish blockade on Cypriot registered vessels

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (23.11.06) reports the following:

    "The issue of opening of the Turkish ports is a part of the Cyprus issue, not of the Customs Union. Actually, it is a commercial problem stemming from high shipping charges for Greek Cypriot merchants who make exports to Turkey. It is not proper to create a dramatic atmosphere just because shipping charges for Greek Cypriot merchants are increasing," Turkey's Secretary-General for EU Affairs Oguz Demiralp said on Thursday.

    Demiralp informed members of the Parliamentary EU Adjustment Commission on "Turkey-EU Relations, Negotiation Process and Political Criteria".

    "Earlier this month, the European Commission released its Progress Report for Turkey. The European Commission indicated in the report that Turkey had made progress in political criteria," he said.

    "The EU considers the issue of opening of Turkish ports to the Greek Cypriot traffic a part of Customs Union. Actually, this issue is a part of the Cyprus issue, not of the Customs Union. This problem emerged in the late 1970s after Greek Cypriots attempted to close Turkish Cypriot ports to traffic. The Turkish party responded to this attempt by taking some measures in 1980s. As you see, this issue is a part of the Cyprus issue. According to our point of view, it has nothing to do with the Customs Union. If that is so, how does the EU establish such a link? The EU says that Turkey violates the Greek Cypriots' right to choose way of transportation for their goods by not allowing them to use Turkish ports.

    "When we consider the issue from the EU's point of view, it is a commercial problem stemming from high shipping charges for Greek Cypriot merchants who make exports to Turkey. It is not proper to create a dramatic atmosphere just because shipping charges for Greek Cypriot merchants are increasing," he said.

    Upon a question about the proposal of Finland on the Cyprus issue, Demiralp said: "Finland has not yet conveyed to us a written document about those proposals. Actually, this is diplomatically good. There will not be a deviation in our Cyprus policies."

    [09] EU High Level Contact group starts its contacts in the occupied part of Cyprus

    Illegal Bayrak television (23.11.06) broadcast the following:

    The European Parliaments High Level Contact Group for relations with the Turkish Cypriot `People´ is in Cyprus for a series of contacts.

    Members of the group met with university students at a gathering this morning at the Near East University.

    The 25 member group arrived in Cyprus last night for a two day visit.

    The delegation is being led by the Coordinator of the Contact Group Franscoise Grossetete in the third such visit to the island by the group.

    Members of the Contact Group started their contacts in the `Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus´ this morning by meeting students at a gathering at the Near East University.

    Later, the group met with representatives of the Cyprus Turkish Chamber of Commerce at a working lunch.

    Members of the Greek Cypriot Chambers of Industry and Commerce also attended the lunch.

    [10] Turkish Anadolu Group signs stock transfer accord with Greek Alpha Bank AE

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (23.11.06) reports that the Turkish Anadolu Group signed a stock transfer agreement with Greece-based Alpha Bank AE on Thursday.

    The two parties will each have 50 percent shares in the finance holding they will establish under the agreement.

    Through the agreement, Anadolu Group will develop its activities in banking and finance sectors in Turkey.

    [11] News reports and poll on Erdogans ascending to the Presidency of Turkey

    Turkish daily TURKISH DAILY NEWS (23.11.06) under the title "Erdogan Signals Presidential Ambitions", publishes the following article by Goksel Bozkurt:

    Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has made only a single change to his Justice and Development Party's (AKP) Central Executive Board (MYK), replacing Akif Gulle, who was recently involved in an auto accident, with Professor Edibe Sozen.

    Sozen will also be deputy leader, a move Ankara interpreted as a hint that Erdogan will be running for president.

    Sozen dresses in modern clothing and does not wear a headscarf. She received a masters degree in social structure and change from Marmara University's economics department in 1982. She also completed her Ph.D. in the same field. Between 1991 and 1993 she studied "social representations theory" and "human communication" at the University of Wisconsin's communications arts department as an honorary fellow. In 1994 she became an associate professor and since 1995 has been teaching in Istanbul University's communications department as a professor. Sozen has also written columns for ZAMAN daily. She has served as a member of the executive board of the Anatolia news agency.

    Recently appointed AKP deputy leader Sozen responded to questions from the Turkish Daily News and said she would be responsible primarily for public relations, media and work on the centrist policies of her party. "I will be working on extending civilian influence as part of our centrist policy."

    On the same issue, Turkish daily MILLIYET newspaper (23.11.06) reports that an A&G survey commissioned by Kanal-D between 18-19 November in nine provinces on the upcoming presidential elections shows that 51 percent of the electorate oppose and 31 percent support Prime Minister Erdogan's presidency. Of the 51 percent, the 40 percent say they are opposed to Erdogan because he is not secular and republican. Support for Erdogan is stronger among the young people. And only 11.7 percent believe Erdogan's election as president would trigger a military putsch.

    The paper also reminds that a survey contacted by YENI SAFAK newspaper last week had revealed 29.7 percent support and 39.6 percent oppose to Erdogan's presidency.

    [12] Turkish police raided Christian missionaries in Istanbul: Two detained

    Turkish daily Istanbul SABAH newspaper (20.11.06) under the title "Operation Crucifix" publishes the following article by Erdal Simsek:

    Gendarmerie raids missionary, takes two into custody, reveals observation lists.

    Estimated 150,000 people

    Gendarmerie teams raided one home and one office in the Silivri and Taksim districts of Istanbul acting on a tip off that "children were being targeted by missionaries." When the computer passwords were broken it emerged that the missionaries had been keeping tabs on the people they had interviewed. The total number of people so flagged currently stands at around 5,500.

    Gendarmerie mount "Operation Crucifix"

    One office and one house in Silivri and Taksim that had been furnished as a crèche downstairs and a place of worship upstairs were raided. After statements were taken from 59 people two were detained in custody.

    As part of the Istanbul Gendarmerie's "Operation Crucifix" two people, missionaries HT and TT, were taken into custody. While both were released on their own recognizance statements were taken from a total of 59 people in connection with the investigation.

    The Gendarmerie teams raided the office and the home in Silivri and Taksim after being tipped off. During the raid on the office, which was laid out as a crèche downstairs and a place of worship upstairs, specially encrypted computer files and electronic recording devices were found. Once the codes were broken the files showed that very detailed and colourful data bases had been compiled about the people that the missionaries had interviewed.

    Sexual relations mission

    In order to convince the people they reached the missionaries reportedly made promises of money, work and education, and also tasked 17-18-year old girls to engage in sexual relations with young men in order to influence them. The SABAH newspaper interviewed the people who had been data based.

    Mustafa Coskun: They called me. They said something like a bible introduction association. In fact, when they found out that I was from Sivas the person calling mentioned a village from my parts. They said we were from the same home town.

    AT (Woman working in private sector company): I ordered a bible last year. I was curious about the bible. It was free and I did not see anything wrong. After that they began to call me continuously and invite me to meetings.

    Complainant Fatih Kose: Basically, what they are doing is trying to turn Muslim Turkish society into Christians en masse.

    What they call office is church

    Interesting information has emerged from the Gendarmerie raids in Taksim. One place inside a bookstore and referred to as an office is actually a church-cum-home. The lower section is a crèche. In the crèche there are books and CDs detailing Christianity.

    Council of state: Religious freedom

    A ruling made by the Council of State in June 2005 said that RTUK [Supreme Radio and Television Council] was wrong to issue a warning to a radio station on the grounds that it was conducting Christian propaganda. The Council of State's 13th Chamber agreed that missionary broadcasting should be perceived as "religious information."

    /SK


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